6 Quick and Easy High-Protein Snacks

High-Protein Snacks

It’s clear that protein is an important part of a healthy diet. Protein is the macronutrient you need to build and maintain muscle tissue in your body, among other functions. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Your body uses them to make new tissue to heal wounds, make hormones, and form antibodies.

If you exercise or are over 60, you need more protein in your diet than a younger or inactive individual. One way to get more protein is to consume protein-rich snacks rather than the typical snack of ultra-processed carbohydrates. Let’s look at the healthiest (and tastiest) high-protein snacks you can add to your plate

Greek Yogurt

What’s not to love about Greek yogurt? If you’re looking to boost your protein intake, consider starting your day with Greek yogurt. One cup (6 ounces) of nonfat, plain Greek yogurt provides 10 grams of protein. Compare that to regular yogurt, which has around 6 grams of protein per cup.

Greek yogurt is made by straining regular yogurt to remove the whey, or liquid. This process gives it a thicker texture and higher protein content than standard yogurt. Greek yogurt contains less sugar than most types of milk and milk products. In fact, Greek yogurt is a better alternative to regular yogurt for those trying to reduce their sugar and carbohydrate intake.

There are so many delicious ways to enjoy yogurt in your meals that are much more creative than just adding it to your smoothies (though obviously you should still do that!). Other ideas:

  • Serve it with fruit and granola for breakfast or dessert.
  • Stir in spices to serve as a dip for chips or pita bread.
  • Mix Greek yogurt with chopped cucumber and garlic for a healthy dip to serve with carrots and celery sticks.

Cottage Cheese

Let’s face it: when it comes to cottage cheese, most people either love it or hate it. But whether you enjoy the creamy, cheesy texture or gag at the mere thought of eating it, there’s no denying that cottage cheese is a healthy food.

Low in calories and high in protein, cottage cheese is an excellent source of calcium and vitamins B12 and B2. Cottage cheese contains more protein than many other types of cheese — about 12 grams (g) per half cup. However, it’s lower in calcium relative to most cheese and only has about half the calcium of a glass of milk.

Cottage cheese contains casein, which your body digests at a slow and steady rate. This makes it an excellent source of protein to have before bedtime since it keeps your body in an anabolic state, something bodybuilders love! One cup of cottage cheese can provide up to 24 grams of high-quality protein, which is about half the daily recommended intake in women, or 40% for men.

Here’s a healthy snack that includes cottage cheese: Slice up an apple, banana, kiwi, or pear and top it with cottage cheese for a healthy snack. You can also add berries or granola.

Chia Pudding

Chia pudding is a healthy pudding made from chia seeds. It’s super creamy, packed with protein, and makes an excellent breakfast or snack. Two tablespoons of chia seeds have 4 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber. Plus, these tiny seeds are rich in plant-based omega-3s, containing more than walnuts.


1/2 cup chia seeds

1 1/2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 tablespoon maple syrup, or to taste


  • Soak the chia seeds in almond milk for 20 minutes. Add vanilla and maple syrup and mix well. Refrigerate overnight or up to 5 days.
  • You can go for a classic pudding flavor such as chocolate or vanilla, but you can also get creative. You could mix in several types of fruit or even your favorite veggies!


Edamame is a snack food made from fresh green soybeans. It’s popular in Japanese cuisine and can be found in many Asian grocery stores. It’s popular to eat edamame as a snack with a sprinkle of sea salt.

The protein in edamame is complete, which means it contains all nine essential amino acids. One cup of cooked edamame contains about 17 grams of protein. This is a lot for a plant-based food and is comparable to the amount of protein in a serving of meat or cheese.

Edamame is nutritious and high in several vitamins and minerals, including folate, manganese, vitamin K1, copper, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, and thiamine (B1).


A 3-ounce serving of sardines contains 20 grams of protein, a substantial amount of protein for such tiny fish. Sardines are also a reliable source of calcium, iron, and vitamin D. The fats in sardines are long-chain omega-3s, a type of fat known for its anti-inflammatory benefits.

  • Plain sardines with a squeeze of lemon.
  • Mixed with mayo and spread on whole-grain crackers.
  • As part of a salad with chickpeas and vegetables.
  • As a snack with fig jam or hot pepper sauce

It’s best to eat sardines in olive oil or tomato sauce rather than sardines canned in vegetable oil. These oils may have high levels of inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids, which can potentially offset some benefits of omega-3s.

Hard-Boiled Eggs

Hard-boiled eggs are one of the most portable protein sources. They’re cheap and easy to make, and you can prepare them in batches ahead of time. Eat them whole with a dash of salt for breakfast, lunch, or a snack. Or add them to salads, sandwiches, grain bowls, wraps — the possibilities are endless! Top them with guacamole for extra flavor and healthy fats.

Hard-boiled eggs contain only 70 calories, yet pack 7 grams of high-quality protein. They also contain several important nutrients including vitamin B2, vitamin B12, and selenium.

The Bottom Line

Use these handy tips to help you find the protein snack of your dreams. The next time you’re craving something savory, try one of these options and you’ll be on your way to reaching your daily goals.


  • “Greek Yogurt Nutrition and Health Benefits.” 29 Jul. 2021, verywellfit.com/greek-yogurt-nutrition-health-benefits-5193987.
  • “How Much Protein In Cottage Cheese – ProteinProGuide.com.” 23 Dec. 2021, proteinproguide.com/how-much-protein-in-cottage-cheese/.
  • “Quick Answer: How Much Calcium In Cottage Cheese – BikeHike.” 11 Aug. 2021, https://bikehike.org/how-much-calcium-in-cottage-cheese/.
  • “Chia Seeds | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan ….” hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/chia-seeds/.
  • “Edamame Nutrition Facts: Calories, Carbs, and Health Benefits.” 11 Oct. 2021, verywellfit.com/edamame-nutrition-facts-4583022.

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Can Consuming Protein after a Workout Help You Build More Muscle?

How Leucine Kickstarts Muscle Gains

5 Tips for Building Muscle When You Eat a Plant-Based Diet

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